As I Faced the Fiscal Cliff, I Failed to Find Comfort in the Words of Winston Churchill

As I read in the Wall Street Journal about the failure to come to some agreement to resolve the fiscal cliff, I thought again about these words: 

We can always count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they have exhausted all the other possibilities.

I have often heard these words attributed to Winston Churchill. But a web search for the source took me to the article on this quotation, which indicates this is a folk quotation. Many people have had a hand in inventing it, but there is no evidence that Winston Churchill participated in that invention. Still, I hope it is true.

For the record, my proposal for dealing with the long-run budget issues that are the heart of the disagreements between Republicans and Democrats is the system of “public contributions” laid out in my post “No Tax Increase Without Recompense.” This public contribution system would help make sure that the poor and afflicted are taken care of while reducing the footprint of the government in society.